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Lesley Strous

Provisional Psychologist
Educational Psychologist (South Africa) | 20 years (South Africa)
As a recent immigrant, I am currently designated as a Provisional Psychologist. My background encompasses two decades of private clinical practice in South Africa where I provided psychotherapeutic services to adults, couples, children and adolescents. My practice is dedicated to establishing a therapeutic environment characterized by respect, safety and containment, facilitating clients' exploration of self and significant interpersonal relationships.


The cornerstone of my therapeutic practice is the facilitation of insight through identification and examination of behavioural patterns that obstruct the attainment of fulfilling life experiences. A recognition and amendment of repetitive, unproductive choices. The therapeutic alliance is instrumental in promoting personal development, self-awareness and resilience. The aim is to support clients in developing a comprehensive understanding of their behaviours and emotional responses, which is anticipated to initiate cognitive and perceptual changes. Such changes are envisaged to foster healthier decision making, personal growth and an acceptance of both strengths and vulnerabilities. The therapeutic journey is aimed at enhancing coping strategies, moving beyond diagnostic labels, and achieving sustained well-being.


In the period preceding the COVID-19 pandemic, my clinical focus predominantly centred on addressing anxiety, depression and trauma in children and adolescents, particularly given the significant trauma prevalence in South Africa. Through the medium of play therapy, incorporating basic toys and board games, valuable insights into the clients’ internal worlds were gained.

Furthermore, my participation in a two-year Infant Observation course refined my skills in non-judgemental observation, fostering a therapeutic environment of respect and client generated insights. Additionally, this engagement with Infant Observation deepened my interest in Developmental and Attachment theory across the lifespan, investigating the influence of attachment styles on early self-perception, relational dynamics and worldviews. This approach has been instrumental in fostering sustained self-awareness and resilience among clients.

The transition to the pandemic era necessitated a shift in my clinical practice towards adults, particularly older adults, and couples. This demographic shift was largely due to the challenges associated with online therapy for children and adolescents. The primary issues addressed included anxiety, depression and relational difficulties, exacerbated by prolonged periods of isolation.

Recently my therapeutic experience has broadened to include the exploration of the somatic manifestations of trauma, inspired by Bessel Van Der Kolk’s seminal work, “The Body Keeps the Score”.

Clients I work with:

Issues I work with:

Therapeutic Approaches I use:

Additional Specialty Approaches:

  • The Polyvagal Theory of Trauma and Anxiety.